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Dokumentenidentifikation EP0660757 24.02.2000
EP-Veröffentlichungsnummer 0660757
Titel WAFERHALTEPLATTE UND HEBEVORRICHTUNG
Anmelder Varian Associates, Inc., Palo Alto, Calif., US
Erfinder FREYTSIS, Avrum, Swampscott, US;
HERTEL, J., Richard, Boxford, US
Vertreter derzeit kein Vertreter bestellt
DE-Aktenzeichen 69422700
Vertragsstaaten DE, FR, GB, IT, NL, SE
Sprache des Dokument EN
EP-Anmeldetag 13.06.1994
EP-Aktenzeichen 949201974
WO-Anmeldetag 13.06.1994
PCT-Aktenzeichen US9406708
WO-Veröffentlichungsnummer 9036
WO-Veröffentlichungsdatum 22.12.1994
EP-Offenlegungsdatum 05.07.1995
EP date of grant 19.01.2000
Veröffentlichungstag im Patentblatt 24.02.2000
IPC-Hauptklasse B05C 13/00
IPC-Nebenklasse B05C 11/02   H01L 21/00   

Beschreibung[en]
Field of the Invention

The present invention relates generally to a wafer retaining mechanism for semiconductor processing equipment, and more particularly, to wafer holder apparatus used in batch type ion implanters.

Background of the Invention

In batch type ion implanters a number of wafers are mounted on a cooled platen forming part of a spinning implant disc and exposed to the ion beam for doping semi-conductor wafers. This arrangement allows increased throughput by using a high current ion beam while maintaining the temperature of the wafers within the acceptable range.

Many efforts have been made to improve ion implantation technique by elimination of contamination and cross-contamination.

One source of contamination is sputtering of accumulated ion species from wafer holders exposed to the ion beam onto the wafer. These species function as cross-contaminants of previous implantations.

Another source of contamination is particles falling on the wafer during wafer processing. Most particles are produced by improper clamping of the wafer. The particles disposed on the wafer surface before the implantation process screen the implantation. The particles which fall on the wafer after implantation cause contamination of the following processed wafer.

Early devices for retaining wafers during ion implantation utilized either peripheral clamping mechanisms, for example, devices with a clamp ring engaging the front surface of the wafer or centrifugal clamping apparatus to hold the wafer on the cooled platen.

Along with the desire to prevent particulate formation and cross contamination in both types of clamping, the wafers must be protected from physical damage during the process. To avoid breakage of the wafers, they should be accurately positioned at the disc before clamping them thereon.

Peripheral clamping devices such as a clamp ring obstructs part of the front surface of the wafer and are susceptible to particle generation effects. Because of build-up of sputtered material on the clamp ring, the ring can be a source of particulate contamination. During the implantation process, the clamping ring is exposed to the ion beam and becomes a source of sputtered contamination from the clamping ring to the surface of the wafer. Moreover, the shadowed portion of the wafer is not exposed to the implantation process.

Centrifugal clamping techniques eliminate the need for clamping members that contact the wafer surface, and reduce the amount of wafer holder exposed to the ion beam above the wafer's plane. A centrifugal clamping arrangement provides the whole surface of the wafer for ion treatment, but specific mechanically complicated disc structure is required for producing sufficient centrifugal force for clamping.

One attempt to provide better utilization of the wafer surface and reduce both particle generation and sputter contamination effects was disclosed in U.S. Patent No. 4,817,556 "Apparatus for Retaining Wafers" assigned to the assignee of the present invention. This mechanism is located primarily on the backside of the platen and uses edge handling. A flexible collet with a number of fingers around the periphery of the wafer retains the wafer by contacting its edge protruding above the surface of the platen. The platen has a plurality of grooves around its periphery, and each groove accommodates a finger. The outside portion of the collet is molded into and supported by an elastomer ring so as to allow the collet to flex, moving the fingers outward so that the wafer can be loaded onto the platen. The multiple grooves in the platen expose the flexible collet and its elastomer supporting ring to the ion beam. When the collet is actuated the material deposited by the ion beam, as well as the wear particles generated in the mechanism, are ejected and can deposit on the front surface of the wafer.

A multi-axis robotic system which is used in U.S. Patent No. 4,817,556 for loading wafers onto the platens of the implant disc creates a certain amount of positioning error, particularly when operating inside a large vacuum chamber where perfect alignment is difficult to achieve. The rather limited movement of the fingers provided by the flexing of the collet makes this design sensitive to these positioning errors. Any misclamped wafer could be broken during the implant process causing loss of valuable material and expensive downtime to clean the implanter. Therefore, reliable operation of the wafer retaining mechanism could be provided by including wafer misclamp detection on systems, so that misclamped wafers could be reclamped.

An attempt to solve the positioning problem is described in U.S. Patent No. 4,744,713 "Misalignment Sensor for a Wafer Feeder Assembly" detects wafer position to prevent misclamping of the wafer by sensing a collimated light beam reflected off the surface of the wafer. To implement the design a light source and a light sensor have to be placed on a supporting structure inside the vacuum chamber of the ion implanter far enough from the surface of the wafer to allow the disc transition from the wafer loading position to the implant position. To ensure reliable detection of misclamped wafers, a precise alignment of the implant disc and the components of the sensing system has to be maintained. Though the device effectively provides security against misalignment in the mounting of the wafer and avoids possible physical damage to the wafer, the clamping of the wafer is maintained with a peripheral clamping mechanism. This wafer clamping system includes a retractable spring loaded clamp with two arms which engage the wafer when loaded, wherein, in operation part of the wafer is overshadowed by the arms. The arms being exposed to the ion beam accumulate species which become cross-contaminants in a following implantation process.

Our earlier patent specification US-A-5040484 discloses apparatus for retaining a wafer on a disc, said wafer having first and second opposed edges and flat surfaces in front and back, comprising a platen for supporting the wafer, clamp means mounted on the platen for relative reciprocating motion, and pusher means mounted for reciprocal motion, moving in one direction to cause the clamp means to release the wafer and in the other direction out of direct connection therewith so that the clamp means holds the wafer on the platen, together with lifting means coupled to said pusher means for lifting said wafer from said platen after the clamp means has released the wafer. The present invention improves on this arrangement by providing the platen with a fence for contacting the first edge of the wafer and by providing lever means pivotally attached to the clamp means, spring means attached to said lever means for urging said clamp means to contact the second edge of said wafer to press said first edge against said fence of said platen, said pusher means moving in said one direction to move said clamp means away from said fence to release the wafer and in the other direction out of engagement with the lever means so that the clamp means holds the wafer against said fence of said platen.

Other aspects of the present invention will become apparent from the following detailed description, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings illustrating by way of example the principles of the invention.

Brief Description of the Drawings

  • FIG. 1 is a detailed cross sectional view of an apparatus for releasably holding wafers on a spinning disc of a batch ion implanter constructed according to the present invention.
  • FIG. 2 is a cut-away partial perspective view of the apparatus for retaining wafers according to the present invention.
  • FIG. 3 is a schematic block diagram of a wafer detection sub-system for use with the wafer retaining mechanism of the invention.

Detailed Description of the Invention

FIG. 1 depicts a wafer-holder apparatus which includes a wafer-receiving platen 1. Platen 1 is installed in spinning disc 8 of a batch processing ion implantation system and having a plurality of through holes (not shown). Platen 1 has a flat front surface exposed to the ion implant beam and a rear surface mounted on the spinning disc 8. Fence 1A (shown in FIG. 2) is configured as a raised circular portion on the periphery of the front surface of platen 1 to match the circumference of the wafer 2 so as to engage a side surface of the wafer 2.

The apparatus further comprises pull rod 6 which is installed in guide bushing 14. The first end of pull rod 6 is bent outwardly toward the front surface of platen 1. Roller 7 is mounted on the first end of pull rod 6 so that roller 7 and the first end of pull rod 6 extend above the front surface of the platen 1 so as to engage the edge of the wafer 2. The second end of pull rod 6 is attached to pivoting lever 5 which is supported by housing 3. Lever 5 rotates around pivot point 15. Spring 4 is positioned within housing 3. Spring 4 provides the force required to move the wafer 2 towards fence 1A of the platen 1 and retain the wafer 2 while disc 8 is in a vertical position. Finger 9 extends from the side of lever 5 below the spinning disc 8 opposite the side to which pull rod 6 is attached. Counterweight 10 is attached to the underside of pivoting lever 5. The apparatus further comprises spring loaded pusher mechanism 11 coupled with wafer lift plate 13 mounted on drive shaft 16. Lift pins 12 are mounted on wafer lift plate 13.

In operation, wafers are loaded and unloaded in the implant chamber when the disk is in a horizontal position. Disc 8 is rotated so that the wafer platen is in position to receive a wafer which is conveyed to the disc. An example of an implantation system with a mechanism suitable for loading the wafers onto a platen and an overview of typical operations is provided in U.S. Patent No. 4,817,556, assigned to the assignee of the present invention, which is incorporated herein by reference.

After loading of wafers is completed, disc 8 is pivoted into the vertical plane for implant, approximately perpendicular to ion beam, and then disc 8 is spun. Roller 7 presses wafer 2 against fence 1A by the force of spring 4. Disc has to be brought up to speed. When the spinning speed achieves the value of approximately 400 rpm and wafer 2 is securely held to the platen by the centrifugal force, counterweight 10 which is also subject to the centrifugal force will overcome the bias of the spring 4 and by means of pivoting lever 5 will move pull rod 6 with roller 7 away from wafer 2. When the implant process is completed and the disc spinning speed is reduced, roller 7 will return to its original position retaining wafer 2 in place while the disc 8 is being transferred to the horizontal position for wafer 2 batch reloading.

To open the wafer retaining mechanism, wafer lift plate 13 with lift pins 12 is raised by a linear actuating mechanism connected to drive shaft 16 (FIG. 1). Pusher 11 first contacts finger 9 and pivots lever 5 extending spring 4 and moving pull rod 6 with roller 7 away from the edge of wafer 2. Continued upward motion of the wafer lift plate 13 will cause lift pins 12 to contact and then raise wafer 2 above the surface of the platen so that wafer 2 can be accessed by a robotic loading device.

After a new wafer is delivered to pins 12 by the robotic loading device, pins 12 lower wafer 2 onto the surface of platen 1. When wafer 2 is placed on the platen 1 and pins 12 continue their movement downwardly, pusher 11 starts moving downward with finger 9 following its movement and maintaining contact with pusher 11 until roller 7 engages and locks wafer 2 against the fence of platen 1. After that, finger 9 stops moving, and the electrical contact between pusher 11 and finger 9 is interrupted. The break in the electrical contact is detected by wafer handler controller 20, which is a part of conventional detection systems further including wafer presence sensor 21, servo motor controller 22, and motor 23 shown in FIG. 3. If wafer 2 was delivered to platen 1 with too large an error, such as being placed over the fence or over the roller, it will not be clamped and roller 7 will continue its motion to the end of the stroke range with finger 9 maintaining electrical contact with pusher 11. Since the position of the pusher means is continuously monitored by the wafer handler controller 20 it is possible to detect whether the electrical contact was interrupted before the end of the stroke of pusher 11 and so identify a misclamped of wafer 2.

It should also be noted that the geometry of the linkages of the wafer retaining mechanism is such as to provide close to linear motion of pull rod 6 decreasing therefor relative motion between roller 7 and the edge of wafer 2. Most of the elements of the wafer clamping apparatus are mounted onto the backside of the platen to reduce dramatically particulate generation.

Although a specific embodiment of the wafer retaining mechanism has been described and illustrated, the invention is not to be limited to the specific forms or arrangements of parts so described and illustrated, and various modifications and changes can be made without departing from the scope of the invention. Within the scope of the appended claims, therefore, the invention may be practiced otherwise than as specifically described and illustrated.


Anspruch[de]
  1. Vorrichtung, zum Haltern eines eine erste und zweite Kante sowie flache Oberflächen auf der Vorder- und Rückseite aufweisenden Wafers auf einer Scheibe, enthaltend eine Platte (1) zum Tragen des Wafers, mit einem Rand (1A), der an der ersten Kante des Wafers anliegt, Klammermittel (6,7), die an der Platte zur Ausführung einer Hin- und Herbewegung in Richtung des Randes befestigt sind, eine Hebelanordnung (5,9), die drehbar an den Klammermitteln gelagert ist, Federmittel (4), die mit der Hebelanordnung verbunden sind und die Klammermittel gegen die zweite Kante des Wafers und dadurch die erste Kante gegen den Rand der Platte drücken, weiterhin einen eine reziprozierende Bewegung ausführenden Treiber (11), der in einer Bewegungsrichtung, die Hebelanordnung betätigt und dadurch die Klammermittel zum Lösen des Wafers vom Rand wegbewegt und in der anderen Bewegungsrichtung den Hebel freigibt, so daß die Klammermittel den Wafer gegen den Rand der Platte andrücken, und mit dem Treiber gekoppelte Abhebemittel (12,16), um den Wafer von der Platte abzuheben, nachdem die Klammermittel diesen freigegeben haben.
  2. Vorrichtung nach dem Anspruch 1, bei der die Platte eine flache Frontfläche zum Berühren der flachen Rückseite des Wafers und eine Vielzahl von Durchgangsbohrungen aufweist.
  3. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 2, bei der die Abhebemittel eine Vielzahl von Hubstiften (12) enthalten, die durch die Durchgangsbohrungen hindurchreichen, um den Wafer anzuheben.
  4. Vorrichtung nach einem der Ansprüche 1 bis 3, bei der die Klammermittel eine Zugstange mit zwei Enden (6) enthalten, an deren erstem Ende eine Druckwalze (7) befestigt ist, die im Einsatz die zweite Kante des Wafers berührt und um die herum eine Gleitbuchse (14) angebracht ist.
  5. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 4, bei der die Druckwalze (6) so an dem ersten Ende der Zugstange angebracht ist, daß ein kleiner Teil von ihr über die Platte hinausragt.
  6. Vorrichtung nach einem der Ansprüche 1 bis 5, bei der die Hebelanordnung einen Hebel (5) mit zwei gegenüberliegenden Seiten enthält, der am oberen Ende seiner ersten Seite, drehbar gelagert mit dem zweiten Ende der Zugstange (6) verbunden ist und der am unteren Ende seiner zweiten Seite einen Finger (9) aufweist, der im Betrieb durch den Treiber (11) bewegt wird und so den Hebel schwenkt.
  7. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 6, bei der die Hebelanordnung ein auf der zweiten Seite des Hebels befestigtes Gehäuse beinhaltet, das mit der Oberseite an der Platte anliegt, an dessen unterem Ende ein Gegengewicht (10) befestigt ist, um im Betrieb die Zentrifugalbewegung des durch die Justagevorrichtung gehalterten Wafers während der Rotation der Scheibe auszutarieren, und in dem die Feder (4) angeordnet ist.
  8. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 7, bei der der Finger (9) auf der zweiten Seite des Hebels (5) gegenüber von dem Gehäuse angebracht ist.
  9. Vorrichtung nach einem der Ansprüche 6 bis 8, bei der der Treiber (11) und der Finger (9) voneinander elektrisch isoliert sind.
  10. Vorrichtung nach einem der Ansprüche 1 bis 9, bei der der Rand (1A) als hervorstehendes Kreissegment der Platte ausgebildet ist und in Richtung der Außenseite der Scheibe weist.
  11. Vorrichtung nach Anspruch 10, bei der das hervorstehende Kreissegment ein integrales Teil der Platte ist.
Anspruch[en]
  1. An apparatus for retaining a wafer on a disc, said wafer having first and second opposed edges and flat surfaces in front and back, comprising:
    • a platen (1) for supporting the wafer, said platen having a fence (1A) for contacting the first edge of said wafer;
    • clamp means (6,7) mounted on said platen for reciprocating motion with respect to said fence;
    • lever means (5,9) pivotally attached to said clamp means;
    • spring means (4) attached to said lever means for urging said clamp means to contact the second edge of said wafer to press said first edge against said fence of said platen;
    • pusher means (11), mounted for reciprocal motion, said pusher means moving in one direction into engagement with said lever means to move said clamp means away from said fence to release said wafer, and in the other direction out of engagement with said lever means so that said clamp means holds the wafer against said fence of said platen;
    • lifting means (12,16) coupled to said pusher means for lifting said wafer from said platen after said clamp means has released the wafer.
  2. Apparatus as claimed in claim 1 wherein said platen has a flat front surface for contacting the flat back surface of said wafer, and a plurality of holes extending therethrough.
  3. Apparatus as claimed in claim 2 wherein said lifting means has a plurality of lift pins (12), wherein in operation said lift pins project through said holes to lift said wafer.
  4. Apparatus as claimed in any one of claims 1 to 3 wherein said clamp means further comprises:
    • a pull rod (6) having first and second ends;
    • a roller (7) mounted on said first end of said pull rod, wherein in operation said roller contacts the second edge of said wafer; and
    • a guide bushing (14) placed about said pull rod.
  5. Apparatus as claimed in claim 4 wherein the roller is positioned on said first end of said pull rod (6) so that a small part of said roller extends over said platen.
  6. Apparatus as claimed in any one of claims 1 to 5 wherein said lever means comprises a lever (5), said lever having first and second opposed sides the upper portion of said first side of said lever pivotally connecting to said second end of said pull rod (6) and a finger (9), said finger fixed to the lower portion of said second side of said lever, wherein in operation said finger is moved by said pusher means (11) to pivot said lever.
  7. Apparatus as claimed in claim 6 wherein said lever means comprises a housing mounted to said second side of said lever, the top side of said housing attached to said platen and a counterweight member (10) fixed to the bottom of said housing, said counterweight member in operation counterbalances the centrifugal movement of said wafer held by said means for adjusting said wafer when said disc is rotated, said spring (4) being disposed within said housing.
  8. Apparatus as claimed in claim 7 wherein said finger (9) is attached to said second side of said lever (5) opposite to said housing.
  9. Apparatus as claimed in any one of claims 6 to 8 wherein said pusher means (11) is electrically insulated from said finger (9).
  10. Apparatus as claimed in any one of claims 1 to 9 wherein said fence (1A) is formed as a raised circular portion of said platen oriented toward the outside of said disk.
  11. Apparatus as claimed in claim 10 wherein said raised circular portion of said platen is an integral with said platen.
Anspruch[fr]
  1. Appareil pour retenir une plaquette sur un disque, ladite plaquette comportant des premier et second bords opposés et des surfaces plates à l'avant et à l'arrière, comprenant :
    • une platine (1) pour supporter la plaquette, ladite platine comportant une barrière (1A) pour toucher le premier bord de ladite plaquette ;
    • un moyen de serrage (6, 7) monté sur ladite platine pour un mouvement alternatif par rapport à ladite barrière ;
    • un moyen formant levier (5, 9) fixé à rotation audit moyen de serrage ;
    • un moyen formant ressort (4) fixé audit moyen formant levier pour solliciter ledit moyen de serrage pour toucher le second bord de ladite plaquette afin de presser ledit premier bord contre ladite barrière de ladite platine ;
    • un moyen formant poussoir (11), monté pour un mouvement alternatif, ledit moyen formant poussoir se déplaçant dans un premier sens pour s'engager avec ledit moyen formant levier afin d'écarter ledit moyen de serrage de ladite barrière pour libérer ladite plaquette, et dans l'autre sens pour se dégager dudit moyen formant levier de sorte que ledit moyen de serrage maintienne la plaquette contre ladite barrière de ladite platine ;
    • un moyen de levage (12, 16) couplé audit moyen formant poussoir pour soulever ladite plaquette de ladite platine après que ledit moyen de serrage a libéré la plaquette.
  2. Appareil selon la revendication 1 dans lequel ladite platine comporte une surface avant plate pour toucher la surface arrière plate de ladite plaquette, dans laquelle est ménagée une pluralité de trous traversants.
  3. Appareil selon la revendication 2 dans lequel ledit moyen de levage comporte une pluralité de tiges de levage (12), lesdites tiges de levage s'étendant en fonctionnement dans lesdits trous pour soulever ladite plaquette.
  4. Appareil selon l'une quelconque des revendications 1 à 3 dans lequel ledit moyen de serrage comprend en outre :
    • une barre de traction (6) comportant des première et seconde extrémités ;
    • un galet (7) monté sur la première extrémité de ladite barre de traction, ledit galet touchant en fonctionnement le second bord de ladite plaquette ; et
    • une douille de guidage (14) entourant ladite barre de traction.
  5. Appareil selon la revendication 4 dans lequel le galet est positionné sur ladite première extrémité de ladite barre de traction (6) de sorte qu'une petite portion dudit galet s'étend sur ladite platine.
  6. Appareil selon l'une quelconque des revendications 1 à 5 dans lequel ledit moyen formant levier comprend un levier (5), ledit levier comportant des premier et second côtés opposés, la portion supérieure dudit premier côté dudit levier se raccordant à rotation à ladite seconde extrémité de ladite barre de traction (6), et un doigt (9), ledit doigt étant fixé à la portion inférieure dudit second côté dudit levier et étant déplacé en fonctionnement par ledit moyen formant poussoir (11) pour faire pivoter ledit levier.
  7. Appareil selon la revendication 6 dans lequel ledit moyen formant levier comprend un boîtier monté sur ledit second côté dudit levier, le côté supérieur dudit boîtier étant fixé à ladite platine, et un élément formant contrepoids (10) fixé au fond dudit boîtier, ledit élément formant contrepoids équilibrant en fonctionnement le mouvement centrifuge de ladite plaquette maintenue par ledit moyen pour ajuster ladite plaquette lorsque ledit disque est en rotation, ledit ressort (4) étant agencé à l'intérieur dudit boîtier.
  8. Appareil selon la revendication 7 dans lequel ledit doigt (9) est fixé audit second côté dudit levier (5) opposé audit boîtier.
  9. Appareil selon l'une quelconque des revendications 6 à 8 dans lequel ledit moyen formant poussoir (11) est électriquement isolé dudit doigt (9).
  10. Appareil selon l'une quelconque des revendications 1 à 9 dans lequel ladite barrière (1A) est formée par une portion circulaire relevée de ladite platine dirigée vers l'extérieur dudit disque.
  11. Appareil selon la revendication 10 dans lequel ladite portion circulaire relevée de ladite platine est solidaire de ladite platine.






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